Wednesday, September 30, 2009

What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday

It's kind of a brisk morning here "where the wind comes sweeping down the plains." So, I ask you this...

Would you rather...

Have cold hands

or

Have cold feet?

It's supposed to get in the low 80s today, so I'll be okay. I'm just wondering what you'd rather have.

As for last weeks question...I would take the chicken fried steak with gravy (and mashed potatoes...yummmmmm, YUM)! I do love me some homemade mac 'n cheese, though, but the CFS wins!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Piano Teacher--a review

I've decided that since I've been reading a lot lately and that I currently have a stack of 10 library books sitting on my dining room table waiting to be read, that I will start doing reviews of the books I read. I'm not a literary genius and often don't care about the underlying message, so my reviews won't be deep and intellectual...just what I thought of the book (unless the book really touched me or something like that)...

I just recently finished The Piano Teacher by Janice Y.K. Lee.

My review: This was a decent book about basically about 3 main characters. It takes place during the 1940s and 1950s in Hong Kong. The story was good enough, my main beef was that they author, who is from Hong Kong and lives there now, didn't really give me enough background on the culture and 'feeling' of Hong Kong at that time period. I did quite a bit of googling "History of Hong Kong" so I could understand a little better why the characters were doing and acting like they were. I wish that the characters had been developed a little better, too. Especially the main male character. I never really "got" him. Would I recommend this book? Oh, probably. It's quite bland and won't really keep you captivated, but it's okay. Mostly this book left me wanting to learn about Hong Kong and it's culture, politics, people, etc. The story really has potential, it just needed to be deeper.

You can read it quickly, so if you want a quick read, it would be fine.

On a scale of 0-5 stars, I'd give it 3 stars.

Thanks--hope you enjoyed the review.


Up next...The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold (author of The Lovely Bones). Just a little heads up on this one...I HATE IT, so far. I'm only about 50 pages in, but I'm really considering not finishing it. I just keep telling myself it'll get better. I don't know...I really, REALLY do not like it.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Monkey Business

I've been seeing signs of monkeys living in my house for a while now.

I finally caught one monkeying around on video...

video

No one showed him how to do that...he just thought it would be fun. I walked into the dining room and caught him doing it. (I took this video once WM got home so an adult could be nearby in case he fell. Also...I'm not sure I like Katie cheering him on).

There's a lot of monkey business going on at our house.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday; Thursday Edition

Thank you for your kind understanding yesterday. I just couldn't do a What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday post when I had visions of celebrities dancing in my head!

So here's today's question for What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday...

Fall has arrived, that means comfort food is on it's way. Would you rather have:

Chicken Fried Steak with gravy, mashed potatoes, etc.

or

Homemade, gooey, cheesy macaroni and cheese?

Hmmm, now I'm hungry!

Which would you rather have?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I Like to Boogie

Stop the What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday presses!!!

Dancing with the Stars new season has started!

I watched both nights so far and I'm pretty sure I know who will be going home tonight (Macy Gray & maybe that ultimate fighter guy...not sure on the dudes).

Anyway...tomorrow you will get the Thursday edition of What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday.

For now...how many of you are watching DWTS? And who are you liking?

Oh--I'm lovin' Kelly Osbourne. Wow--who would've thought??

Donnie Osmond--he's a fairly good dancer, but so super annoying. He'll probably go pretty far, though.

I'll give you more of my thoughts on DWTS later...I definitely have an opinion (I'm just short on time today--I'm cooking dinner for a friend who had a baby)...

Peace, love and dancing!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The End of an Era

This past weekend something happened that I wasn't prepared for. It was something I knew was eventually going to happen, I just didn't think it would happen so soon. This weekend an era at the Lam household came to an end. It was the crib era. This past weekend we took the crib down.

The crib has been part of our lives for over 6 years. I remember when we put the crib up when I was 9 months pregnant (no, I was not one of those expecting mothers who had everything ready to go months before baby is born...we finished the nursery about 1 week before Katie was born). I remember looking at it thinking "this is my baby's bed." I remember laying each one of our babies in that crib. I remember the many (MANY) nights I sleepily walked in and picked up my babies out of the crib when they woke in the night. I've cleaned up spit up, poo, pee, smushed crackers, spilled sippies out of the crib. I remember lowering the mattress when the kiddos got too big and raising it back up when a new baby came along. I remember Patrick flipping himself out of it and the girls climbing out of it. And mostly I remember tip-toeing in during the night to check on my newborn baby--just to make sure he/she was breathing and okay. But mostly I remember standing over that crib, gazing down at my precious child, so peacefully asleep, thinking how perfect he/she is and how blessed I am to be his/her mother.

But things change, children grow, and the crib must eventually come down. And little girls learn to climb out and roam around during the night. WM didn't realize she was doing this so when I mentioned it to him, he said maybe we should think about moving her out of the crib. The next day he went for his morning run and came back and said..."there's a white toddler bed at a garage sale down the street that's in really good shape." I had a few problems with this...1). I don't usually do garage sales, and 2). I don't do toddler beds. But it was super cheap and in excellent condition...and he'd already gone and bought it before I could decide. He had it wiped down, disinfected and a fresh coat of paint on it before I realized what was happening.

Katie taking a nap (with a stocking cap on) in the crib.
And when I had gone to run errands, he took down the crib and set up the new bed.

Patrick in the crib--the typical boy, he liked gadgets and toys in his bed.
And that was it. The end of the Crib Era.

I know you can't tell...but this is Josie sound asleep in the crib.
It was probably best he did it that way--quick and fast. Like ripping off a Band-Aid. But I do feel like I have an exposed wound every time I walk in the bedroom and the crib isn't there.

The new bed.
Maybe a little retail therapy would help heal that wound. I didn't have the opportunity to get a cute little quilt for her new bed (we're just using what we had for the crib).

Josie is obviously adjusting (and sleeping) to her bed just fine.
Or maybe I just need to realize that my babies are growing up and there will be no other babies coming and this is just the beginning of letting go. Thank goodness God gave me 18 years before they leave for college--it'll take that long for me to be ready.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Today


I love my husband...

I love my highly dramatic daughter...

I love my laid back, easy going son...

and I love my little spit-fire of a two-year-old...
Today and everyday...

I love my life.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What I'm Lovin' These Days

When WM and I decided that I was going to stay home with the kiddos and not work we also decided that they were going to have Patrick and Josie take this year off from pre-school. I mean, I quit my job to be with my children, not send them away all day to preschool. Josie could've started pre-school this year and Patrick would be well into a preschool program, but this year, we are keeping them home with me. We'll rethink it next year (yes, Patrick could go to Kindergarten next year, but he has a late summer birthday and we know first hand what can happen when you're the youngest in the class, so he's going to start Kindergarten when he's six years old).

Anyway...one of my challenges is teaching the kids age appropriate lesson (letters, colors, etc) to make sure they can do what will be expected of them when they do go to Kindergarten. And also keeping Katie on track at school.

I recently found these sticky Post-It notes at Mardel and Target that is helping immensely.
Each sticky note has a Sight Word or a letter (there are other options, too, numbers, number words, etc).

(Sorry about the ridiculously spotty/dirty windows--it's been raining here for, oh, 3-4 weeks, there hasn't been an opportunity to go out and wash the windows. Bear with me).
We can stick them on the window to look at and talk about when we eat meals. Or we can move them to the bedroom or living room. Wherever.

I like them because to the kids it doesn't seem like they are sitting down and doing schoolwork. We make games out of them. This is one our favorites:

Hide & Seek Letters (or Words): There two versions to this.
Version 1: I choose one of the stickies (letter/word) and go stick it/hide it somewhere in our house and then they kids go find it.
Version 2: I choose several letters/words and stick/hide them around the house and then tell the kids "go find the word 'that' or 'letter B'. And then they go search around for the correct letter.

They are learning their words/letters in a fun way--to them it's just a game.

You could easily make these on your own with blank Post-Its. I think these cost maybe $1.99 or $2.99.

So...these Post-It Sight Words/Letters are what I'm lovin' these days.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday

What do you think about either of these situations? What Would You Rather Do?

Live in a house with no running water

or

Live in a house with no heat/air

Aye! Both sound pretty bad--but you have to choose! Which one?

Oh--and my answer to last week's question...I'd run a marathon. I'm not that strong of a swimmer. I could take walk breaks on the marathon.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Keep Workin' for the Weekend

Patrick Swayze passed away yesterday.

So in memory of him, I thought I'd post one of my all time favorite Saturday Night Live skits (from back in the day when SNL was funny). I'm sure Mr. Swayze wouldn't mind. Isn't it sad that both he and Chris Farley are gone? I wonder if they are giving God the live version of this skit in Heaven this morning. I bet God thinks it's pretty funny, too.

I remember the first time I ever saw Patrick Swayze was in the TV movie North and South. Man, did I think he was handsome. Maybe it was his southern draaaaaawl, maybe it was because I was 12 years old and just starting to notice boys. But I thought he was something else. As we hit the era of Dirty Dancing (a movie that defined a high school generation--yeah, mine. Admit it, we all wish we could've danced like that at prom, but knew the chaperons would jump on us quicker than a bee on honey), I didn't really think he was all that attractive. I will say that he's a heck of a dancer. And he has one of the best lines in movie history....

"Nobody puts Baby in the corner."

For some reason I've kind of liked Patrick Swayze. Most of his movies aren't really my thing. Ghost was okay, but the rest...ehhhh.

I don't know--he just seems like he was a nice guy.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Fall Fashion Report

Every woman has heard the fashion rule when accessorizing is "before you walk out the door, take one accessory off." For those of you who haven't heard it, it's good advice--don't bling yourself up so much that people are noticing your accessories and not you.

Katie doesn't believe in that fashion philosophy.

(four necklaces, multiple bracelets, two headbands...)
Sometimes you should follow the fashion advice of a 6 year old.

Or sometimes not...
(can you believe I took her to mall like this? Actually she fit in quite well).

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Lay Down--Perfect Pairings

Here's today's Perfect Pairings. For some reason I've been struggling the past few weeks and haven't had very good ones. Please forgive me. :) For more Perfect Pairings, go here (and tell Baloney I said "hi")!

Then he lay down under the tree and fell asleep. All at once an angel touched him and said, "get up and eat." -- I Kings 19:5

Hope you have a peaceful Sunday.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Whole Bunch of Nothingness

Today I don't have a darn thing planned (for this post, that is). Since I know you miss my random ramblings, I thought that's just what I'd do today. Just jabber and talk randomly about nothing. Sometimes it feels nice just to read brainless blabber. Here you go...

It's Sept. 11. Eight years has gone incredibly fast, don't you think? Where were you when you heard about the attacks? I was walking into my office at St. John and all the administrators were sitting in our office area watching TV (because our department had a TV--marketing/advertising/PR people--we had to have a TV). I just kind of walked by and logged onto the internet, but all the news sites wouldn't load, so I peeked out my office door to see what was going on and that's when I saw it. I think all the families of the victims and our country could still use some prayer. God Bless America.

This is weird...I can't figure it out. On Wednesday night the counter on my blog was at something around 6400 hits. Yesterday morning when I logged on, the counter was at 11,900. What's up with that??? How could I have 5000+ hits overnight? I think it's a technical error. WM thinks the Spaghettio's people got wind of it. Hee hee...yeah, maybe that's it. The Spaghettio's people are out to get me.

I've agreed to be the Girl Scout leader for the Kindergartner Daisy troop at Katie's school. I'm excited, but a little nervous. Hope I can keep those little 5 & 6 year olds entertained and form them into the confident leaders that scouting is supposed to achieve. I think for now we'll concentrate on planting flowers and helping each other. :)

How 'bout football season? Are you lovin' it? I am! Sorry to the OU fans. I'm an OU fan (most of the people on my mom's side of my family graduated from OU), so last weekend was a sad, disappointing day.

I need the rain to stop. The kiddos haven't been able to go outside in days. Their behavior is showing the affects of that.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!!!! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday

I don't know why I'm hung up on all these exercise questions, lately...you'll just have to bear with me.  

What Would You Rather Do?

Run a marathon (26.2 miles)

or 

Swim across the English Channel (at it's shortest wideth--34 miles)

Eeek--neither of these appeal to me.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Uh Oh, Spaghettio's

I posted a recent 'tweet' on Twitter the other day that said this,

"Is there a named phobia for the fear of Spaghettios? Because I have it."
I thought that was a pretty harmless tweet...just an expression of how I was feeling at the time.  But I had several people question how could anyone have a fear of Spaghettios.  So I thought I should explain. (and if you want to follow me on Twitter there's a little thing you click on over there on the right side, where it says "Tweet Like Me").

It all started one night back in 1967...back in the days when my sister who is 1 year older than I were sharing a bedroom because my parents had the nerve to give us a baby brother (and our new house wasn't done yet).  He booted my sister out of her room...into mine.  (Ok--it wasn't 1967, it was probably more like 1975, let's just say this phobia started a long time ago).

So...my sister and I were sharing my room, and bed.  It normally wasn't too much of a problem.  But this one particular night it became one.  I can honestly say I never really remember my mom fixing us Spaghettios, but apparently she did this night.  Anyway, we were in bed when my sister sat up and threw up Spaghettios...everywhere...all over the bed, all over the floor, all over herself...all over ME!  (If there's one phobia that I have more than the fear of Spaghettios, it's the fear of vomit.  Oh Lordy...don't get me started on that).  So wigged out, running around, jumping up and down, screaming "GET IT OFF OF ME!!!!"  

To keep things from getting too graphic...let's just say that night left a very big impression on me and my dislike of Spaghettios.  The sights...the smells...ugh.  I'm pretty sure I didn't eat them again for a very, very long time.  Not when I was in college, not when I had graduated from college and was living on my own, not as a newly wed.

Then I had children.  Spaghettios is apparently the staple of all toddlers diet--all toddlers except mine.  I didn't do it for a long time, but finally I convinced myself that that dreadful night back in 1975 was just a fluke and that it would be okay to feed my child Spaghettios.

Katie was probably 18 months old when I gave them to her for the first time.  She loved them!  She ate two bowlfuls.  We had our normal nightly bath, story, bedtime.  And as I was putting her to bed, it happened...she threw up the Spaghettios...everywhere.  All over her bed, all over the floor, all over herself...all over ME!  I just remember I sat her down on a towel...yelled for WM and began to wig out.  Again, jumping around, screaming "get it off of me."  The sight and smell took me back to that bedroom my sister and I shared so many years ago.  I eventually calmed myself enough to get in the shower. Vowing to never again buy or open another can of Spaghettios.

But I have.  But I will say it's not very often.  And everytime I feed my children Spaghettios I fully expect there to be throwing up involved.  Sometimes just opening a can of Spaghettios can make me gag.

Also, Spaghettios stain clothing something terrible.

"Hi, I'm Alyssa and I'm a Spaghettio-phob."

And I'm weird.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Perfect Pairing

Here we go...this week's Perfect Pairing.  Go here for more.

How beautiful your sandaled feet, O Prince's daughter! Your graceful legs are like jewels, the work of a craftsman's hands--Song of Solomon 7:1

Friday, September 4, 2009

Read it Again, Mommy!

My kids and I love to go to the library. It's funny which books appeal to my kids.

Patrick is really, REALLY into dinosaurs these days. Back in July we had a dinosaur birthday for him, he's been playing with his toy dinosaurs more than his Hot Wheels, and he even acts out being a dinosaur with roars and stomping, he'll even tell you which ones are 'meat eaters' or 'plant eaters' (his preferred dinosaurs are T-Rex and velociraptor). Like I said, he's really into dinosaurs.

We found these two books this summer. One of these two always ends up in our library bag. We often spend lots of time searching the shelves for them. The librarian at the library we visit even helps us when my Patrick starts to get distraught that it might be checked out. God bless those sweet librarians...they are so patient with my crew!

I find them to be very appropriate...

Cute stories about a boy (named Patrick) and his imagination about dinosaurs. What Happened to Patrick's Dinosaurs is particularly fun--it's Patrick's version of what happened to the dinosaurs and why they aren't on Earth anymore.

And then there's this one...
It's a fun story about a kangaroo (named Josephine) who wants to dance, but all the wombats and other Aussie's tell her "kangaroos can't dance." Well, she shows them! Those Josephine's...they are strong willed gals (I should know)!
It fits our Josephine quite well...she, too, LOVES to dance!

We read these books over and over. It's fun to find books that seem to parallel my children's lives (now if I could just find one titled Princess Ballerina Katie and Her Over Dramatic Day).
With these books, I don't mind it when they say....

"Read it again, mommy!"

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

What Would Rather Do? Wednesday

In the spirit of me trying to live a healthier lifestyle (the working out is coming along nicely, the eating better--not so much)...here's this week's What Would You Rather Do? Wednesday.

Would you rather...

Have to eat a strict, healthy diet everyday without ever getting to "treat" yourself

or

Have to do a rigorous workout everyday without ever having they day off?

What would you rather do?

And my answer from last week--I'd rather have a sandy bathroom floor.  Sticky kitchen floors just irritate the poo out of me.